IBM Corp dropped the other shoe yesterday, making over its best- selling RS/6000 43P technical workstations with the 233MHz PowerPC 604e processor it added to its AIX server line last week (CI No 3,137). As well as slashing prices on other workstations models and phasing some out altogether, it has also doubled the available memory available on the 43P and is making it easier for customers to install and use the best-selling MCAD applications on the boxes, beginning with Dassault Systemes SA’s Catia package. IBM says the RS/6000 operating environment for Catia includes OpenGL 1.1 and GL 3.2 for AIX, Pex and Phigs graphics for AIX 4.1.5 and above, reducing installation time to an average of four hours. It costs $1,400. Similar packages for installing Parametric Technology’s ProEngineer and SDRC’s Ideas in the third and fourth quarters respectively. The new PCI bus, 233MHz 43P Model 140P includes 64Mb to 768Mb RAM and costs from $10,500. It performs 9.24 SPECint95 and 5.75 SPECfp95. The Model 240 costs from $14,000 as a two-way with 64Mb to 1,024Mb RAM. It performs 8.71 SPECint95 and 5.87 SPECfp95. Upgrades are from $5,100. The 240 is also available in an F40 server and H10 rack configurations. Other workstation tags have been reduced 11% to 37%. IBM advises general purpose CAD/CAM customers to go with 43P solution but to wait for new workstations using its latest Micro Channel Architecture Power2 Super Chip (CI No 2,084) for the best floating point performance. IBM is hoping the combination will improve its standing in the Unix workstation market – it is currently scrapping with DEC and Silicon Graphics Inc for the privilege of following Sun and Hewlett-Packard. Gone from its price list are the PowerPC 601 minitower, 604 E20 server, PowerPC 41W workstation, and the 601-based 250 workstations. IBM indicates its RS/6000 re-branding program is hung up on getting international clearance for its new naming conventions.